NEW DELHI: West Indian T20 legend Chris Gayle bets on Englishman Sam Curran in front of his compatriot Ben StokesCameron Green of Australia and Mayank Agarwal of India at Friday’s IPL mini auction in Kochi.
Gayle has backed the versatile England to be the most expensive player in IPL auction history since he was young and IPL franchises tend to look to the future in addition to player availability during the season .
Gayle also believes that Stokes, Green and Agarwal could also attract million dollar deals. Now retired, Chris Morris is the most expensive player to date with the Rs 16.25 crore he fetched in 2021.
“I don’t know why they call those names, gimme the money man (laughs),” Gayle said in her inimitable style during an interaction with PTI hosted by Jio Cinema ahead of the IPL auction.
“I’m going to choose Sam (over all). He’s young and IPL tends to look to the future and you have to look at availability. He’s had a good run lately. Stokes played well in the final of the World Cup.
“It’s possible there will be a record deal tomorrow. Don’t be surprised if someone breaks the 16 or 17 crore barrier.”
Versatile player Curran was named the T20 World Cup Player of the Tournament after his ‘death bowler’ skills knocked out opposition batsmen in the finals turned him into a potent weapon for England .
The fast and attacking left arm batsman had a successful stint with Chennai Super Kings but parted ways after a back injury and missed out on the 2022 edition.
Curran has a strike rate of almost 150 and is placed, like Stokes, in the top group of the auction list, so Chennai and their warhorse captain MS Dhoni may want him back as they hunt for a fifth title.
He would also like to see more consistency from Stokes in the IPL.
“Apart from his leadership abilities, he brings a lot to the table,” said Gayle, one of T20’s greatest ever players.
On his playing future, Gayle said he plans to play in a few tournaments in 2023.
“I’m still active, fresh, beautiful, I have the best body in the world. My future as a player will still be bright until I’m 50 (laughs). I’m on a break but I would be looking to play in a few tournaments next year. .”
Gayle said the IPL owes a lot to longtime West Indies teammates Kieron Pollard and Dwayne Bravo, who will play a coaching role in this IPL.
“They are two IPL legends, they will be greatly missed. They helped the IPL become what it is today. You have to give them credit, these two guys have won so many championships.
“It will undoubtedly leave a void in the IPL. These guys are real artists.
“Andre Russell can be that man to carry on the West Indies legacy in the IPL. Hopefully we can see the real Nicholas Pooran. He hasn’t delivered in the IPL as expected by the teams and the fans. He’s been very explosive in other tournaments, but we want to see that on the big stage,” added Gayle.
(With PTI entries)



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